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National College for High Speed Rail (NCHSR) will be the largest of five new national employer-led colleges

Transport Secretary visits ambitious new build

The new build will generate around 25,000 jobs and 2,000 apprenticeships

Posted by Stephanie Broad | October 12, 2016 | Facilities

The Secretary of State for Transport, Chris Grayling visited the National College for High Speed Rail (NCHSR) in Birmingham on 5th October to oversee the completion of the site’s flat roof structure - a major construction milestone in the college’s ambitious development plans.

Mr Grayling joined the National College of High Speed Rail’s Chairman, Terry Morgan, and new CEO, Clair Mowbray, to oversee the milestone of the £22 million facility’s development, which is being built on the banks of the Birmingham Canal.

The NCHSR, which comprises of sites in Birmingham and Doncaster, is the largest of five new, national employer-led colleges being created by the Government to help British students develop world class skills. To mark the Secretary of State’s visit, the College has for the first time released a video showing a fly-through of both sites being developed, as well as new architectural images.

Transport Secretary, Chris Grayling said that the construction of HS2 will generate around 25,000 jobs and 2,000 apprenticeships.

The College will be able to teach more than 1,300 students per year across both sites

“HS2 will be the backbone of our national rail network and help us build an economy that works for all. The significant benefits of the scheme will not just be felt from when the trains start running. Work on the new College sites shows the transformational effect that HS2 is already having, creating jobs and supporting economic growth,” he said.

The UK is highly regarded for its engineering capabilities, but we need to do more to attract new talent to the sector - Transport Secretary, Chris Grayling

“The UK is highly regarded for its engineering capabilities, but we need to do more to attract new talent to the sector as well as improving the skills of the current workforce. That is why the Government launched a transport skills strategy earlier this year committing us to create 30,000 apprenticeships across roads and rail by 2020. The National College for High Speed Rail is a vital part of these plans as it will provide the cutting-edge skills we need to deliver HS2 and other world-beating infrastructure.”

As an employer led college, the NCHSR is developing its curriculum and lessons in conjunction with employers. This will ensure students receive the necessary work experience and skills training to take advantage of the new opportunities and roles which will be created in the evolving UK High Speed Rail Industry.

New jobs which college leavers will be eligible for include high-tech engineers, managers, designers, apprentices and advanced manufacturing roles. With major investment in Britain’s infrastructure in the pipeline, college graduates will be ready to take on the significant work and career opportunities after finishing at the college.

When it opens, the college will offer apprenticeships that are currently being developed using the Government’s new Apprenticeship Trailblazer pathway. From September 2017 the college will provide apprenticeships in Track Infrastructure and Civil Engineering, with a third pathway on Systems Integration beginning in January 2018.

From September 2018 the college will go on to provide a range of HNC pathways, relevant to rail, infrastructure, construction, engineering, design, technology and manufacturing.

Alongside this it will also deliver a range of Continuous Professional Development (CPD) programmes for workers already employed within the rail industry, these will be developed with businesses to meet their developing needs.

At full capacity, the College will teach more than 1,300 students per year across both sites.

The ambitious £22 million facility is being built on the banks of the Birmingham Canal

Supported by Birmingham City Council, Doncaster Council and the Local Enterprise Partnerships for both areas, the Birmingham college and its sister site in Doncaster are the first major construction projects aligned to the High Speed Rail industry, a clear indicator of the progress the project is making. With construction on both sites on schedule, the colleges are due to welcome their first intake of students in September 2017.

The construction milestone falls in the week that Clair Mowbray officially starts her new role as CEO for the National College of High Speed Rail. With 20 years’ experience working across the private and public sectors, Clair has been promoted to Chief Executive from her former position as Business Director, where she previously took responsibility for overseeing the establishment of the College, shaping the curriculum and the essential liaison with businesses and employers.

The National College for High Speed Rail will offer students a pathway to grab a once-in-a-generation opportunity to work in an exciting new industry - Terry Morgan, Chairman of the National College of High Speed Rail 

Terry Morgan said: “The National College for High Speed Rail will offer students a pathway to grab a once-in-a-generation opportunity to work in an exciting new industry.

“I’m extremely pleased to appoint Clair as the new Chief Executive of the National College for High Speed Rail. Her commitment and passion for education and strategic development will be vital as we move closer to opening the College in September 2017.Prospective students interested in finding out more about the college, and the type of courses it will offer, can now register their interest via the newly launched website www.nchsr.ac.uk.

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